That fluffy white snow is lovely to watch falling from the warmth of a living room window. This time of year, does your mind drift to booking flights to sunny destinations and dipping your toes into the hot sand of ocean beaches? In preparation for my... I mean, your next travel adventure, here's tips on how to pack like a pro:
Start a packing pile a week or more in advance. Don't wait until last minute. That way you can go through the pile a second time and weed out things you don't actually need closer to your departure date.
Make a packing list while considering your travel schedule. What activities will you do on your trip? Knowing you'll be at the beach all day and out for dinner at night gives you a place to start. Here's the basic categories:
- outerwear & footwear
- clothing & accessories
- swimwear & active wear
- while-in-transport needs (pillow, earplugs, earphones, water bottle, book)
- health care, first aid and medications
- passport, travel documents, credit card, travel apps, foreign currency, directions
- and finally a checklist to secure things at home while you're away
Roll your clothes to fit more into your suitcase. Mother always told me this and she was right! Rolling is where it's at to be the most prepared for any occasion.
Leave a side pocket empty to store dirty laundry. Consider stuffing a bag in the pocket so you can tightly roll them up like a vacuum pack later, leaving more space for inevitable new purchases.
Use stuff sacks or baggies for smaller loose items and gadgets. Containerizing makes for quick and easy retrieval of smaller items. I prefer these mesh bags from MEC for ultimate visibility and colour coordination, if you're into that sorta thing ;)
Avoid extra baggage fees - weigh your luggage and check your airline carriers baggage limits before reaching the airport. You could stand on your bathroom scale with and without holding your suitcase, or you could just buy one of these luggage scales on Amazon.
Finally, pack your carry-on wisely. If you've experienced the unthinkable lost or delayed checked suitcase even once, you know this prep step is worth it. Toothbrush, underwear, one outfit - whatever you consider essential.